Health Warning Labels for Salt!?
According to the CDC, 90% of Americans consume too much sodium. Now a group of global health organizations has released a statement calling for salt to have tobacco-style health warnings to try to curb sodium intake. So, this is an example of what it might look like. What do you all think? Well, first of all, I think this is bad news for me. I love my salt shaker so much. (audience laughing) My salt shaker is one of my best buddies. So this is, this is, bum news for me, but I will say this, you know, what we know about these tobacco warning labels, ’cause they’re kinda talking about it and comparing it to that. Tobacco warning labels in terms of text, tobacco warning labels are more about statistics. They don’t really work that well. Only 7% of people who look at them will say, “Yeah, I’m gonna think about cutting down on my cigarette smoke.” But if you add a graphic, and they started to do this in other countries, we don’t do that just yet, but they were testing it in certain markets, where, ya know, its like these fictionalized pictures of people who suffered the medical consequences of tobacco smoke, that it ups that sort of wanting to change up to 15%. So if they really want to put this on salt shakers, they need to put a graphic of somebody having a medical consequence. I have some good news for you. I have some good news for you. We eat way too much sodium in this country, but it’s not, most of its not from a salt shaker. It’s hidden in all the processed foods, and that’s where, so that was misleading because, look, if you’re gonna go buy table salt, you know there’s too much sodium in it if you eat the whole thing. (audience laughs) But, more than 70% of the sodium consumed, that is from processed, and also restaurant foods, and that’s where I kinda wish there was a little bit of a warning label, like, hey, warning, this is really high in sodium. Yeah, that would be helpful because people don’t realize the salty six, like things like bread and salad dressing that you wouldn’t necessarily think of when you think of sodium. You think of chips and things like that. Some of these foods, you’re looking at 40+ percent of your daily sodium in one serving, and how many of us, when you eat a packaged product, and you open the package and there’ll be like ten servings, I don’t know if I’ve ever eaten just one serving. So let’s play a little game of do you know where your sodium is hiding? So we’re gonna play this game. We’re gonna show you two popular foods, and you tell us which one you think is saltier. First up, yogurt or cottage cheese? (muffled conversations from audience) It’s actually cottage cheese. Is much higher, greater than 500 milligrams per cup. Yogurt, about 200 milligrams per cup. How ’bout this one? Vegetable juice or salted pretzels? (muffled conversations in audience) Vegetable juice! It’s all that added salt. Lots of added salt. In fact, a popular brand, 640 milligrams of sodium per serving. That’s like eating more than a quarter of a teaspoon of plain salt. That’s a lot of sodium. All right, how ’bout this? A handful of salted potato chips or one dill pickle? (muffled answers from audience) Well, you put me in a pickle because you know everything! (audience laughing) You’re right! It’s one single pickle can have up to 280 milligrams of sodium. Wow. And, hey, that doesn’t mean you can’t have your pickle. Yes. Just don’t have too many pickles. Or it’ll put you in a pickle. So, if you’re gonna go out and dine out, and you have problems with high blood pressure, your doctor said to watch your sodium intake, ask! Also, you can say, “Look, I prefer you prepare my fish or this without added salt. You are absolutely allowed to do that. If you ever buy a product at the store, and it has a label, flip it over and read! Exactly. Look at, see how much sodium there is. And, you don’t have to worry about the milligrams. Just look and see if the percentage of your recommended daily value. Lot of times, it is, it’s way above 30, 40%. So be aware of that. And then, last but not least, you wrote an entire book on this. Oh, spices! Use herbs and spices instead of– Yes, to flavor foods. Yeah, that’s my favorite. It is true, if you’re out at a restaurant, you can always get the sauce on the side, because that’s a big thing. Is that it’s gonna be in the actual sauce, but yeah, flavoring foods with herbs and spices can add tremendous health benefits and drastically reduce the salt in anything that you make at home. So it’s a double benefit if you can get more herbs and spices in. And the great irony of sodium, sodium is not bad. In fact, sodium is necessary for us to live and be a part of this world. Too much sodium is the problem, so if you think you have a problem, talk to your doc. I want to thank you Dr. Jampolis for being with us.